This week: Post-Boston issues, U.S. infrastructure discussion and more

We’ve seen a rather weird 7 days this week as only small news articles trickled into our newsroom. Most articles contained news of either some post-Boston-explosion nervousness or smaller airport incidents from around the world.

First up was New York’s JFK airport (JFK) with an incident on Sunday when, according to Reuters, authorities temporarily evacuated a terminal to investigate a suspicious package, which turned out to be a tube of toothpaste wrapped in duct tape. A spokesperson for the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey said that the package was found in the baggage room area of Concourse B in Terminal 4. The terminal itself was reopened after about 90 minutes.

On the West coast of the United States a different incident made headlines a bit later in the week: Fox News reported that flight status signs at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) accidentally flashed the message “Emergency Leave the Terminal”. According to the article an investigation revealed that an airline contract employee authorized to access the system accidentally activated the message. The airport said no alarms went off and there were no reports of anyone evacuating.

Also in the United States, the long feared airport budget cuts are being felt in the form of delays by thousands of U.S. travellers across the nation. However, the Washington Post argued in an article today that the aviation system still worked despite cuts intended to save $200 million. And continued to say that it just didn’t work as well as it could. And therein lies a lesson: Americans want better infrastructure, but they will muddle along just fine in the 21st century when they don’t get it, the newspaper wrote. This discussion is surely going to continue.

And to finish the week off, a news piece from our home town, Melbourne in Australia: ABC News reported on Tuesday that an aerobridge at Melbourne Airport (MEL) was damaged this morning when a United Airways plane strayed too close to its parking bay. In the article an airport spokeswoman said no-one on either the plane or the aerobridge was injured, but she declined to say how much damage was done. She said the plane will not be returning to the USA tonight as scheduled, and the aerobridge is “inoperable.”. The Herald Sun, a local newspaper, had a very clear photo of the parking accident, you can see it here. The  return flight of the same aircraft, UA840 was subsequently cancelled.

That’s it for this week – safe travels!

[Photo from Flickr – Some Rights Reserved]